Ethical jewelry: 3 reasons to choose lab-grown gemstones
Over the past century, humanity has learned to do things on a cosmic scale, literally and figuratively. Businesses are becoming more robotic and automatized. China is printing houses on 3D printers. Elon Musk continues to take aim at colonizing Mars. At the same time, some companies grow natural gemstones in the laboratory.
Many people believe that stones grown in the laboratory have a different chemical composition and characteristics. In other words, these stones are not real, artificial. This is just not true.
To be on the same page, let's clarify the terminology. Gemstones that are grown in the laboratory are not artificial. By their chemical composition, they are exactly the same as precious stones extracted in the wild. Artificial gemstones are considered imitators, meaning that a stone tries to imitate another without having the same chemical and physical composition as its natural counterpart.
Impeccable quality and features
To grow gemstones like emeralds, diamonds, ruby, the labs actually reproduce natural processes and conditions: temperature, pressure, and chemical composition of the soil. When all these conditions converge at the only correct point, one can grow a gem in a year, which has the same roughness as the crystal that occurs in nature. Laboratory-grown gemstones and diamonds have exactly the same chemical, physical and optical properties as their counterparts extracted in the natural environment.
Moreover, no one can determine the origin of the stone without special equipment. A qualified gemologist, a specialist who is engaged in the identification, evaluation and certification of precious stones, will be able to tell whether the gem is grown in the laboratory or not. Yet he will have to work hard on this, too. Just taking a magnifying glass and looking at the stone will not be enough.
Growing gemstones in the lab is a more ethical and environmentally friendly way to produce jewelry. When talking to our clients, we have found that the vast majority prefer high-quality, beautifully crafted jewelry made of precious stones, but at the same time, customers care that the production leaves a lighter carbon footprint on the planet. It's really important to them. And to us, too.
When we talk about eco-friendly production, there are many variables to consider. Today, there are cleaner methods of extracting precious stones than ever before. However, in a broad sense, growing precious stones in a laboratory is less harmful to the planet and leaves a much lighter carbon footprint than mining stones from in the wild.
Of course, laboratory production requires a lot of energy, exotic metals and chemical elements, but the risk to the planet in this case is much less than when moving tons of earth. Labs do not endanger running water, do not leave holes in the ground at the size of city blocks, and they are sure that no one will get hurt in the production process.
For a stone that is mined in the ground and has the same color and purity as the stone from any lab, you can pay tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars. Easily put, exceptional quality stones from the lab are sold for the price that the buyer will give for a natural stone that will be darker. The darkness means that the stone will not pass and reflect the light as well as a cleaner stone. The play of light is what makes the stone alive.
One of the precious stones that we like here at Devia Jewelry, is a moissanite. Moissanite is a rare gem. The amount of this beautiful mineral with a diamond luster is
negligible in nature. It can only be found in corundum deposits, kimberlite rock, and some residuals of meteorites (yes, they say moissanite came from the stars!).
And this is the main thing to remember when you see the word "moissanite" on the jewelry label—it will always be not a natural stone, but it's a lab-grown brother—carborundum or silicon carbide.
Nevertheless, the stone turned out to be a real find for the jewelry industry. Because moissanite is grown through a controlled process in a lab and not extracted from the ground and moved through a supply chain, it is much more affordable. Yet it looks just like a real diamond and as durable as its “older brother”. With characteristics that are not inferior to diamonds, the cost of moissanite is much lower than that of the older brother, and is about 400-600 dollars for 1 carat against a diamond carat for 6000-10,000 dollars.
Lab-grown moissanite is a perfect fit for an engagement ring. Shall you consider this option for your fiance, reach out to us by any means. We would be happy to have a chat and help you with designs, sizes, and all that jazz.